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Josh Reddick Shares Photo of A’s Flying on Plane with Giants Logo

The Oakland Athletics finished off a three-game sweep of the Seattle Mariners with a 2-1 win on the road Sunday night and prepared to hop on a plane to return home for a series against the Los Angeles Angels.

However, outfielder Josh Reddick wasn’t thrilled to fly on this particular aircraft:

It’s hard to blame him, considering the rival San Francisco Giants logo was plastered across the front of it. The Giants noticed Reddick’s post and decided to have some fun of their own on Twitter, but Reddick wasn’t willing to let it go without again voicing his disapproval:

As far as Twitter beefs go, this one is tame, but props to the Giants for jumping at an opportunity to troll the A’s. Of course, they better hope Reddick doesn’t get his revenge at the plate when the two teams meet for a four-game series from June 27 to June 30.

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Trevor Story Sets MLB Record for Home Runs in 1st 6 Games

Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story set an MLB record on Sunday with his seventh home run through his team’s first six games of the season, per Owen Perkins of

He passed some impressive company with the record-breaking home run, per Baseball Tonight:

Story burst onto the scene this year in his first career game when he went 2-for-6 with two home runs and four RBI in a 10-5 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Opening Day.

He hit four home runs over the next three games, including two more on Friday in a 13-6 loss to the San Diego Padres. His home run streak was broken on Saturday in another loss to the Padres, 16-3, but he bounced back with an eighth-inning blast on Sunday for the record as the Rockies salvaged the series with a 6-3 win.

The 23-year-old is hitting .333 with 12 RBI on the season.

“I’m just trying to have a clear mind up there and compete with my eyes,” Story said on Friday, per Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post. “I know there will be ups and downs. When I’m going good, this is what it is.”

Scott Miller of Bleacher Report recognized Story’s impressive performance:

Although playing at Coors Field can certainly improve a player’s power, that excuse can’t be used here, as Story hit his first four home runs on the road. He hit 20 home runs last season in 130 minor league games, but no one could have predicted this power.

A week into the season, he has more home runs than 16 teams, per ESPN Stats & Info.

He obviously won’t keep up this pace, and he’d have to reach 50 to break Mark McGwire’s rookie home record, but if he can reach 40, he’ll finish in second place.

Story, a 2011 compensation pick by the Rockies, was the benefactor of a 2015 trade that sent starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to the Toronto Blue Jays

It’s a small sample size, but considering Story has knocked in more than one-third of Colorado’s runs this season, it’s safe to say they’ll be OK moving forward without Tulowitzki.

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Robinson Chirinos Injury: Updates on Rangers Catcher’s Arm and Return

Texas Rangers catcher Robinson Chirinos suffered a broken right forearm Saturday during his team’s 4-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. It is uncertain when he will return after being placed on the disabled list. 

Continue for updates.

Chirinos Placed on 60-Day DL

Sunday, April 10

John Blake of revealed that Chirinos was placed on the 60-day disabled list and that catcher Brett Nicholas was purchased from Round Rock.

Bryan Holaday is the only other catcher currently on the Texas roster. He filled in Saturday and went 1-for-2 with a double, RBI and run scored.

Chirinos Has Been Serviceable for Rangers

Chirinos has hit .234 with 24 home runs and 76 RBI in 189 career games with the Rangers after spending one season with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2011. He had yet to throw a runner out this season, but the 31-year-old was batting .267 with one home run and two RBI this season prior to the injury.

It’s never good to lose your starting catcher, and his 10 home runs in just 78 games last season were encouraging.  

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Mets vs. Royals: Score and Twitter Reaction from 2016 MLB Opening Night

Edinson Volquez threw six scoreless innings, and the Kansas City Royals held off a late rally by the New York Mets in a World Series rematch to win 4-3 at Kauffman Stadium on Sunday.

Four different Royals knocked in runs as the team defended its championship in style on Opening Day. However, the victory came with some drama, as closer Wade Davis put runners on first and third before striking out David Wright and Yoenis Cespedes to end the game.

Kansas City celebrated its first win of the season on Twitter:

When MLB released the 2016 schedule in September, no one could have imagined the coincidence that would occur Sunday, when the two teams that played in the previous year’s World Series matched up on Opening Day for the first time.

Unfortunately for the Mets, they had to watch the Royals raise their first World Series banner since 1985 after falling 4-1 in last year’s Fall Classic.

The pregame scene was surreal for a team that didn’t qualify for the playoffs from 1986 through 2013.

Damon Amendolara of CBS Sports Radio couldn’t believe what he was seeing: 

As great as the festivities were for the Royals, Sunday marked the beginning of a new season. Once the umpire called Volquez’s first pitch to Curtis Granderson a strike, the Royals officially had begun their quest to repeat as World Series champions.

They got off to a fast start, as first baseman Eric Hosmer singled home Mike Moustakas in the bottom of the first inning to give Kansas City a 1-0 lead.’s Buster Olney shared his thoughts on the first run, which followed a Cespedes error:

Mike Lupica of the New York Daily News took a shot at Cespedes, who failed to make a play in Game 1 of the World Series, leading to an Alcides Escobar inside-the-park home run:

Although it was a tough first inning for Mets starter Matt Harvey, he didn’t allow a hit after Hosmer’s RBI single until the fourth inning, when center fielder Lorenzo Cain hit a leadoff single. The Royals eventually pushed across a run on a Kendrys Morales sacrifice fly to seize a 2-0 lead.

Kansas City led 3-0 in the sixth after a two-out RBI single by left fielder Alex Gordon. When catcher Salvador Perez followed with a single, the Mets pulled Harvey from the game.

Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star fired off a tweet after the Mets pulled Harvey, seemingly referencing a bladder infection earlier in the week that nearly caused Harvey to miss his start:

Second baseman Omar Infante added an RBI single off Bartolo Colon for the team’s final run, which was charged to Harvey.

Harvey, who failed to defeat the Royals for the second straight time, was decent at best—5.2 innings, eight hits, four runs, three earned—but he wasn’t nearly good enough opposite Volquez, per the Royals:

The Royals bullpen does not usually blow leads, but Joakim Soria came on to start the eighth and didn’t leave until he allowed three runs on three hits and two walks in just two-thirds of an inning.

Henry Lake of Kansas City’s 610 Sports Radio tweeted what every Royals fan must have been thinking after the 4-0 lead was suddenly 4-3:

Setup man Luke Hochevar, who came in with runners on second and third, struck out Asdrubal Cabrera to restore order.

The Royals then turned to Davis, who has allowed 15 earned runs in 139.1 innings over the past two seasons, to end the game.

Six of the nine Royals regulars finished with at least one hit, while Hosmer led the way with a 3-for-4 performance. Michael Conforto was 2-for-2 for the Mets, and Lucas Duda had a game-high two RBI.

It’s a long season, but the Royals proved to be formidable defending champions with an all-around strong performance Sunday, aside from the eighth inning. They didn’t hit a home run but constantly put the ball in play, striking out only three times and batting .300.

The teams will finish off their two-game series Tuesday night in Kansas City, with Chris Young of the Royals taking the mound against Noah Syndergaard of the Mets.


Postgame Reaction

Volquez, who was the starting pitcher in Games 1 and 5 of last year’s World Series, continued his solid pitching on the big stage.

One would think the 32-year-old would relish the chance to pitch on Opening Day, but that wasn’t the case, according to the Associated Press (via

“I like to enjoy the show,” Volquez said. “Enjoy the time. … I did the best I could.”

His best was certainly good, as was the rest of his team.

“They’re scrappy,” Wright said, per the AP. “We knew that they put the ball in play, they find holes, put together terrific at-bats. They get that lead early and you know the bullpen is coming in. That’s their M.O.—good starting pitching, terrific bullpen and a pesky offense. That’s exactly what they did tonight.”

The Royals were all business during the game, but they like to have fun afterward. Perez nailed Hosmer with his signature “Salvy Splash” while the latter was taking part in an interview on the field, via the Royals:

While the Kansas City fans may have thought it was great to draw a rematch with the Mets, Royals manager Ned Yost wasn’t a big fan, per the AP.

“It was just strange, the pregame ceremony. I think I would have enjoyed it more if we played another team,” Yost said. “For them to relive that, it’s a little awkward.”

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Michael Bourn: Latest News, Rumors, Speculation Surrounding Free-Agent

The Arizona Diamondbacks, who are still in need of a center fielder, could look to add former Atlanta Braves outfielder Michael Bourn.

Continue for updates.

Bourn Could Add to Diamondbacks’ Outfield Depth

Sunday, April 3

On Sunday, MLB reporter Jon Morosi noted Bourn is among multiple options the Diamondbacks could add for depth in the outfield.

The Braves cut Bourn on Saturday despite owing him $14 million, per the Associated Press (h/t Fox Sports).

The 33-year-old journeyman has played for four teams in his 10-year career. Although he has just 31 career home runs, he has stolen 326 bases and earned two Gold Glove Awards.

Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said cutting Bourn was not an easy decision, per David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

[Releasing] Bourn was very, very difficult. It might have been the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. You spend so much time with them, and you care for both of those guys. [Emilio Bonifacio] played his first year in the big leagues for me, with the Marlins. There’s a personal attachment there. And you know with Mike Bourn how we feel about him in this organization and what he brings.

Arizona lists the 24-year-old Chris Owings as its starting center fielder, after A.J. Pollock suffered a fractured elbow, but he has played only shortstop and second base in his career.

David Peralta and Socrates Brito are the team’s backups. Peralta is slated to start in right field, and Brito has just 18 MLB games under his belt.

O’Brien said there is a chance that the Braves also could look to bring Bourn back.

“DFA’ing Bourn and Bonifacio ($1.25 million salary) instead of outright releasing them, there’s a chance the Braves could work out a trade for either and recoup some of the money they owe on those deals,” he wrote.

If Arizona jumps on Bourn first, he would be a solid veteran presence in the outfield, though he won’t be adding any power and hasn’t hit over .260 since 2013.

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Miguel Gonzalez: Latest News, Rumors, Speculation Surrounding Free-Agent SP

Starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez is drawing interest from multiple teams, especially the Chicago White Sox, after being released by the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday.

Continue for updates.

Gonzalez Drawing Interest from Multiple Teams

Thursday, March 31    

Chris Cotillo of SB Nation’s MLB Daily Dish reported the White Sox are “aggressively pursuing” the 31-year-old who is 39-33 in his career.

According to Cotillo, his sources also mentioned the Miami Marlins, Oakland Athletics and Toronto Blue Jays as candidates to sign the four-year veteran, who may not be on a major league roster come Opening Day:

Gonzalez will be on release waivers for 48 hours, meaning he will be eligible to sign as a free agent tomorrow. Any team that would claim Gonzalez off waivers would have to pay his entire $5.1 million salary for this season, so he is almost certain to hit free agency.

Gonzalez appears likely to get a minor-league deal at this point, though his strong market may push teams into giving him a guaranteed major-league deal. More teams are expected to jump in before the end of the week.

Last season was the worst for Gonzalez, who posted an ERA above four (4.91) for the first time in his career, as well as an ERA+ below 100 (84) for the first time, according to

Mark Viviano of WJZ-TV Channel 13 Baltimore thinks despite a poor spring for Gonzalez (9.78 ERA in 19.1 innings), the 6’1″, 170-pounder can find a job:

The right-hander proved he can win at the major league level, but he’s never had a breakout season. And with the disappointing 2015 campaign still lingering, he’s not guaranteed a major league contract.

Chicago’s starting rotation, which includes Chris Sale and Jose Quintana on the top, is solid, meaning a minor league contract with the White Sox is a possibility until they deal with an injury to a starter.

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Johnny Bench Comments on Bryce Harper, Bat Flipping, Retaliation in MLB

Washington Nationals superstar outfielder Bryce Harper ruffled some feathers earlier this month when he called baseball “tired” in an interview with Tim Keown of ESPN The Magazine and said it is a sport that makes it hard to “express yourself” (h/t’s Mike Axisa). 

Many former players shot back at the 23-year-old. Perhaps the loudest was former closer Goose Gossage, but Monday, Hall of Fame catcher Johnny Bench took umbrage as well.

“You can flip your bat. We had guys do that…and the next time up there was chin music. And if you want to play that way, that’s fine,” Bench said on Rich Eisen’s DirecTV show (h/t Randy Miller of NJ Advance Media). “Bring back the excitement? OK, we’ll bring back the brushback pitch, the knockdown pitch. That’s all part of the excitement.”

Bench’s comments aren’t quite as harsh as the 64-year-old Gossage’s, who said Harper has no respect for the game while speaking on Chicago’s ESPN 1000 (h/t the Washington Post‘s Dan Steinberg).

The 68-year-old former catcher seemed to focus on the fact that if Harper and the other young players want to showboat, pitchers should be allowed to retaliate. He reiterated that later in the conversation with Eisen:

I know a lot of the old-timers and a lot of people who watched baseball forever would love to see somebody have a little chin music (as retaliation). If you want to do that, fine. Flip the bat, run around any way you want, but just expect the next time you come up to the plate, you better watching how much you dig into that batter’s box.

Harper won the National League’s MVP award last season after smashing a league-high 42 home runs while knocking in 99 runs and hitting .330. He’s also a brash, hard-nosed player who rarely adheres to baseball’s unwritten rules and is poised to be the face of the game with his monster home runs and outspoken personality.

In reality, Harper has a point. MLB has been slow to attract the young viewers the NFL and NBA have reeled in, and the length of a 162-game season makes it hard for a casual fan to stay engaged.

No matter the sport, there always will be an older generation that thinks its style of play set the standard. But if Harper, who has 97 home runs in 510 career games, continues on the path to becoming one of the best players in the game, it’s not going to matter what anyone thinks.

Instead, Harper will be calling all the shots.

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Jake Arrieta Contract: Latest News and Rumors on Negotiations with Cubs

The Chicago Cubs and 2015 National League Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta agreed to terms on a one-year, $10.7 million contract in February, but it appears the deal wasn’t close to what the right-hander wanted.

Continue for updates.

Epstein Comments on Negotiations with Arrieta

Wednesday, March 9

Per Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune:

“Jake’s priority (now) is helping the team come together and prepare for a season,” (Cubs president Theo) Epstein said Tuesday. “The last thing we would want is to create any distraction. (But) there will be quiet moments out of the competitive spotlight in the future when it will make sense to talk again. It’s certainly not something that is going on now or probably will as the season begins.”

Arrieta Comments on Securing New Deal

Wednesday, March 9

Arrieta said, per Gonzales on Tuesday:

There’s a small window you have as a professional athlete, so you want to try to capitalize on that. But financially, whether I signed an extension or not, we’re still going to be able to live a good life. Money can only make you so happy. We’re extremely happy where we’re at. I love my teammates. I love Chicago. So those are more important than the contract extension.

Cubs, Arrieta Far Off on Long-Term Deal

Monday, March 7

According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the two sides were working on a megadeal, but their talks ended prematurely because of a “decent-sized gap over the length of the deal.”

Heyman shared the figure Arrieta was hoping for:

However, Arrieta will be arbitration-eligible for the third time after the 2016 season, and free agency could loom following the 2017 season. Heyman reported the Cubs were not going to give him a seven-year deal two years before he is set to become a free agent.

He also noted the Cubs “say they love Arrieta and will try again.”

Arrieta Emerged as Elite Pitcher in 2015

The money top-tier pitchers such as David Price and Clayton Kershaw are making hovers around $30 million per year, and while Arrieta has made more than 25 starts in only two of his six years in the majors, he did finish with a 22-6 record and 1.77 ERA last year. His 222 ERA+ was just three points behind Zack Greinke’s mark of 225, per

On top of his stellar pitching, he isn’t lacking confidence. On Monday, when asked on The Spiegel and Goff Show (h/t Chicago CBS) if any hitters in the National League scare him, he gave a simple answer: “Not right now.” 

If he has another solid season next year, the Cubs will need to open their wallets, or they could lose him to another team that does following the 2017 season.

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Woman Injured After Being Struck by Bat at Atlanta Braves vs. Toronto Blue Jays

A fan was struck in the head by a broken baseball bat during Monday’s Toronto Blue Jays exhibition game at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.    

Pam Henderson, a Nova Scotia resident and Blue Jays spring training ticket holder, was taken by ambulance to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg, Florida, after suffering blunt-force trauma, per Gabe Lacques of USA Today. Her current condition is not known at this time.

According to Lacques, Henderson’s husband, Bill, also was struck by the shattered bat from the Atlanta Braves’ Kelly Johnson. He suffered a wrist injury, and the force of the impact shattered his watch.

Pat Wright, Bill Henderson’s sister, explained the scene, per Lacques.

“There was blood running down really quick,” Wright said. “She did not lose consciousness, but she was in shock.”

Lacques explained that the Hendersons’ seats down the first-base line were deep enough that they would not have been behind a net, even at an MLB game with the new safety standards:

The Hendersons were sitting down the first base line, but about nine rows deep, and in the front of the second tier of seats—an area that certainly would not have been covered by enhanced safety netting that Major League Baseball has recommended teams install after a woman was critically injured at Fenway Park last April. Their seats were roughly parallel to the first base bag.

Emergency personnel at the stadium were summoned immediately, and Henderson—her face heavily bandaged—was taken from the scene. A Dunedin Fire and Rescue EMT radioed that Henderson suffered blunt force trauma.

In December, Major League Baseball issued a statement to all 30 teams suggesting safety netting should be added to ballparks to prevent injuries, per Matt Snyder of

Clubs are encouraged to implement or maintain netting (or another effective protective screen or barrier of their choosing) that shields from line-drive foul balls all field-level seats that are located between the near ends of both dugouts (i.e., the ends of the dugouts located closest to home plate, inclusive of any adjacent camera wells) and within 70 feet of home plate. The Commissioner’s Office has retained a consultant specializing in stadium architecture and protective netting to assist interested Clubs in implementing this recommendation.

Blue Jays shortstop Troy Tulowitzki said it’s something he thought about the rest of the game, per Lacques.

“We’re out there doing our thing, and we know it can end badly,” Tulowitzki said. “It sticks with us the whole game. It does affect us. It’s one of those things that’s just bad luck. It seems to be happening more and more.”

Fans assume risks when attending MLB games, but no one wants to see anyone leave with an injury. However, even if the league makes the netting mandatory, there is no guarantee this won’t happen again—especially considering the Hendersons were well past the suggested distance—unless some kind of protective area is installed over the entire lower level.

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Jairo Diaz Injury: Updates on Rockies P’s Recovery from Tommy John Surgery

Colorado Rockies reliever Jairo Diaz will miss the 2016 season after suffering a right ulnar collateral ligament tear in his right elbow, which will require Tommy John surgery.

Continue for updates.

Diaz Won’t Get Chance to Impress in 2016

Sunday, March 6

The Rockies announced on Sunday that the surgery is imminent.

Diaz, 24, pitched in 21 games for the Rockies last season, compiling an ERA+ of 200, with 18 strikeouts and six walks in 19 innings, per   

He suffered the injury during a spring training game on Saturday. 

“I didn’t feel it pop or anything,” Diaz said Sunday morning of the injury, per Nick Groke of the Denver Post. “It just feels weird.”    

With the serious diagnosis, Diaz now will not be able to battle for his roster position, per Groke:

He battled wildness at times, but his 18 strikeouts against six walks seemed promising.

Diaz was set to battle with Scott Oberg, Justin Miller, Miguel Castro and Carlos Estevez for a spot in the bullpen. The elbow reconstruction surgery facing Diaz usually requires 12 to 16 months of recovery and rehabilitation.

While it doesn’t appear the Rockies were going to rely on the right-hander to carry the bullpen, any pitching loss for Colorado is bad news considering it finished last in the majors in 2015 in team ERA at 4.65.

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